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Laa an der Thaya
Coat of arms of Laa an der Thaya.
Laa an der Thaya, Lower Austria, town in the district of Mistelbach, alt. 183 m, pop. 6,280, area 72.89 km2. Junction in the northern part of the Weinviertel region close to the border with the Czech Republic. - District court, District commission, branch office, job centre, revenue office, office of weights and measures, customs office, customs post, Chamber of Agriculture, health insurance agency, Chamber of Labour. Gymnasium, community centre, beer museum (in the castle), local South Moravian heritage museum "Thayaland" in the old town hall. Schools: Bundesgymnasium and Bundesrealgymnasium, Handelsakademie (commercial academy), gewerbliche Berufsschule (vocational school). Border area fair, Laa cultural festival. 2,472 persons employed (1991), 55 % in the tertiary sector; branches of industry: chemical industry (citric acid etc.), automobile industry (trailers), liquor production, brewery. - Archaeological findings from the Bell-beaker Culture, the last part of the late Neolithic period. First documentary mention of a planned settlement in 1150. Town charter between 1198 and 1230, renewed in 1621. Parish church from the late Romanesque, early Gothic period (around 1240, restoration in Baroque style 1720-1745) includes a Gothic crucifix (around 1300) and a west portal (around 1700) by J. B. Fischer v. Erlach; Bürgerspitalskirche church in Gothic style; remains of the medieval fortification; castle (first documentary mention in 1413, extension during the 15th and 16th centuries); watch tower and gate tower; remains of the town wall; mill (16th century); Old Town Hall (core 13th century); Trinity Column (18th century); pillory (1575); column dedicated to the Virgin Mary (1680).
Literature: R. Fürnkranz (ed.), Kulturhefte L., 4 vols., 1983-85; Österr. Städtebuch, vol. IV, part 2, Die Städte Niederösterreichs, 1976.